- H&M's new brand targeted at millennials, Nyden, used Instagram influencers and tools on the platform, such as the photo-sharing app's polling feature, to come up with the designs for its latest collection, according to a report in Business Insider.
- Nine influencers worked on the collection, including Alyssa Coscarelli, Refinery29's senior editor, and Blonde Collective founder Ashley Guyatt. They used Instagram Stories' polling to gauge their followers preferences for certain designs, such as different patterns or using zippers versus buttons, per Business Insider.
- The polls attracted more than 425,000 viewers over two weeks and brought in more than 35,000 votes. Nyden plans to use the data to inform the design of two dresses. H&M launched Nyden in April to focus on collaboration with emerging artists, designers and influences.
Instagram is frequently ranked as the top social media platform for influencer marketing, and H&M is taking advantage of that positioning, not only to build brand awareness, but also inform the actual designs of its clothing in a fairly novel fashion.
Instagram Stories, which cribs from the disappearing photo and video collage format popularized on Snapchat, now has roughly 400 million daily active users, and leveraging interactive tools on the feature, such as polling, could be a powerful way for marketers to crowdsource ideas and gauge consumer preferences for newer offerings. Millennials and Gen Zers, Instagram's core users, also tend to appreciate opportunities to share their ideas with brands and are loyal to brands that they feel listen to their suggestions, according to some industry research.
Despite business struggles, H&M has been a strong performer on social media among fast-fashion brands. A 2017 ShareIQ analysis found that the company generated 39 million Instagram engagements from just 486 posts, and received 20 times the engagement of its peers. Macy's is another retailer that's seen success in putting a heavy marketing focus on Instagram and its team of influencers, which it calls the Style Crew. The company in May redesigned its Instagram feed and used creators to offer unique insights on fashion, beauty and home trends.
Marketers across categories continue to ramp up investments in influencer marketing, but are putting a greater focus on quality of followers over quantity as the channel reaches new levels of maturity and grapples with headwinds like fraud.